Sunday, July 5, 2009

July 5th- on the road again!

We had a great 4th yesterday. We headed into Flagstaff for a 4th of July Parade. There was a ton of traffic due to the parade and the spots in the public parking area for RVs were taken by cars. Deb spotted a traffic attendant and asked where we might be able to park. Following what he gave us, I took a left down a one way street! Immediately there were flashing lights directly in front of me. A very nice police officer asked where we were from, told me not to listen to directions from my wife, and held off the traffic while Deb helped me back up. We found a spot and made it to the parade just as it was starting. The kids loved the parade- there were some star wars characters, dogs pulling carts with kids in them, pirates, the Geek Squad and many other cool floats and bands. Their favorite were the people throwing candy and handing out freeze pops!
After visiting the downtown, we went to the Flagstaff Arboretum. The had a raptor show which was really cool. They had falcons, hawks, a Eurasian Eagle Owl (largest owl in the world) and many other cool raptors. They would let some of them fly from perches in the back to the front and back again. The birds came so close to people in the audience..they would get lift off of people's heads is what they told us. They also had a one legged raven doing fundraising for them. When you gave the bird paper money, it would take it and drop it in a collection jar. As you can imagine, the kids thought that was cool and everyone wanted to give the bird a dollar.

As luck would have it, the arboretum was literally around the corner from our campground..just 4 miles down the road. However, 3 of the 4 miles were dirt and very, very bumpy. When I tried going 15 mph, it felt like we were going to shake the RV to pieces. We had to drive <10Mph! Lucky for us it was gorgeous country for it took about 20 minutes each way to drive that 3 miles.

After dinner, we dug up our courage and headed to the outskirts of Flagstaff for the fireworks. I was definitely not looking forward to navigating in and out of parking lots jammed with cars trying to find a place to park an RV. As we neared the mall where they were hosting the display, we spotted a wide shoulder on the other side of the road. We headed up to the mall and did a 'quick' U-turn and grabbed the spot. The fireworks were really good. One big difference is that they were not as loud as ours- maybe due to the 6000 ft elevation of Flagstaff?

This morning we got up late...7:30..had a really great worship service with the family. We then 'quickly' prepared to head out. Hit the road around 11 heading to Bryce Canyon. Tonight is the full moon and we may try to hit a ranger led full moon hike in the canyon.

I have not been able to post any pictures as I either forgot or cannot find my USB camera cable. Will try to find a store on the road today that might have one. I will post some pictures as soon as I can. Technology. I have 3 USB cables and none of them work with my camera. On the other hand, thanks to technology, I am updating this via my cell phone while Deb drives!

When I turned on the GPS and typed in Bryce Canyon, we took 2 turns and then it said 202 miles to the next turn! You can see dozens of miles in every direction. The landscape is more like open plains compared to the forests of Flagstaff and then the red rock deserts of Sedona with red canyon walls, mars like terrain and really cool red rock pillars. All just awesome.

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